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High time the government steps up to save Kenyan football - Nyamweya

13:02 GMT+3 25/08/2019
Whyvonne Isuza of AFC Leopards v Samuel Onyango of Gor Mahia.
The former football administrator believes the leagues in the country face a bleak future without a main sponsor

Former Football Kenya Federation (FKF) president Sam Nyamweya has appealed to the Kenyan government to step in and sponsor the football leagues in the country.

With the exit of SportPesa, the Kenyan Premier League (KPL) could start on August 30 without a title sponsor and Nyamweya feels it is time the government should step up and sponsor them.

The gaming firm was KPL's title sponsor, parent sponsor to AFC Leopards and Gor Mahia and also sponsored the FKF.

"A sad state of affairs is emerging in our top-flight league; the KPL, the nationwide league and the women national league following the exit of key sponsors," Nyamweya said in a statement seen by Goal.

"Clubs in the three leagues are threatened with a total collapse in the coming days due to lack of funding and KPL also faces dire straits due to the lack of corporate sponsorship.

"In general, our football is on its knees if not on its deathbed."

Nyamweya further explained the effects which may occur should the leagues fail to get an immediate sponsor.

"The KPL with 18 clubs employs almost 800 footballers, technical staff and other employees, NSL has a similar number of employees while the women’s league has over 500 employees," Nyamweya continued.

"The number of dependents from these are into thousands. These are people who will be rendered jobless if the leagues collapse as it is imminent."

The former football administrator directly called on President Uhuru Kenyatta to intervene before the leagues face total collapse.

"I, therefore, appeal to [President Uhuru] Kenyatta and his government to urgently come to the rescue of the leagues but sourcing for finances from the Sports Fund as a stop-gap measure to save the clubs while it helps source for corporate sponsors for the leagues," he added.

"We have to live to the reality should our leagues' collapse, the ripple effect on the national team will be serious."

The 2019/20 season will start on August 30 with pitting Kariobangi Sharks against Western Stima at Kasarani.